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How Should We Apply This Scripture to Our Lives?


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      Like much of the Apostle Paul's writing, this passage is very difficult to understand, but it's also very important that we should. 

      xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

     "Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.   Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.  For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.  Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.  Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.  In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.  Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

     "And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. 

     "Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.

     (Ephesians 6: 10-20)

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     How do any of you interpret this, and how do we apply it to our lives?

      

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There is little teaching in churches about spiritual warfare. Apparently it is a big bad scary subject that few want to talk about or understand properly to teach on it, and are afraid that it might scare people in their congregation. Although in this instance I'm not talking about the big stuff like releasing people from demonic oppression or casting out demons. I mean the everyday warfare that believers go through. The truth is that a majority of the battle we face as believers everyday is unseen and we fight most of it on our knees in prayer.

 

The core message behind this passage is supposed to be to not only inform believers of the opposition they will face, but to prepare believers for how to live a Godly life and stand strong in this corrupt and fallen world against an enemy that we can neither see nor touch. The enemy may not attack non-believers the same way he does to believers, as they are not a threat to his kingdom, but the enemy will work to distract them and do whatever it takes to keep them away from finding the truth about God and the Gospel of Jesus. However, once we believe, our potential to be a threat and not only do damage to the enemies plans, but tear down the kingdom of darkness becomes a real and present problem for the enemy. There is little teaching in churches about the enemy we face, nor about how to discern and identify the attacks of the enemy and deal with them. 

 

In regards to the "Full armor of God" verses, if we consider that when this was written, there were no chapter and verses, then if you read Ephesians as a full book we see this passage in context. If you understand the first 5 chapters of Ephesians, then you can understand what Paul’s final point in Ephesians 6 means. Paul starts in chapter 6 with the word finally. Ephesians 6 is Paul’s last point in the letter. It builds on what he’s been talking about in the previous 5 chapters.

 

The first 3 chapters of Ephesians explains your position in Christ. It describes how you’ve been seated with Christ in heavenly places. Ephesians 4 through 5 describe how you’re to walk, or live as a follower of Jesus. 

Ephesians 6 is the conclusion that describes how you’re to stand even in the face of opposition.

 

So the biggest thing that many believers struggle with is their identity in Christ. The cliche it is easier said than done applies because It is easy to say that you are a child of God then to truly comprehend it. When we first come to salvation, we start out on a journey to understand and accept that identity, As we grow closer to God, we may finally come into that understanding and the point that we can understand our rights and privileges as a child of the King, a royal heir, that we feel a personal intimate connection when we call God, Father. Much the same as when an adopted child in a family comes to see themselves as a full member of the family that has adopted them.

 

But I believe there is two sides to this coin, the first side is your identity in Christ, the second is who Christ is in you. What I mean by that is that your identity allows you to know your rights and power of God that you have access to, but understanding who Christ is in you allows you to understand the authority you have as a Child of God and how to wield that power in the right way.

 

I hope this helps in some way

Edited by Amosathar
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I'm not gonna speak for the OP, but the title is more on applying the scripture. I think I see Christians applying these verses in many different ways. Some see them as a beautiful metaphor for how God allows us to take an active part in transforming our lives and the world around us. And while the metaphor is used exactly once in all the scriptures, some focus very fixedly on it, rather than focusing on things like, say, our pride, which is mentioned all through the scriptures.

 

Now, in the metaphor of spiritual warfare, I can fight against my pride, with God right behind me giving me all the strength I need (and, truth be told, I should do so far more than I do...) OTOH, I can act all beset and besieged, feeling as if God has left me to do all the work by myself.

 

While I can't read minds at all, I do get the impression that some look at these verses and see how we can be hurling thunderbolts, while others see only the dark clouds and the rain. I lean toward the thunderbolts...

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Guest Muckah

I don't think William was having difficulty understanding the basic premise passage, he was just inquiring the opinion of others and how they may understand and interpret it. The passage does involve unseen forces at work that influence us and has many figurative resolutions to combating those influential forces. 

 

There's more to understanding it than one might think.

 

Edited by Muckah
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28 minutes ago, Muckah said:

I don't think William was having difficulty understanding the basic premise passage, he was just inquiring the opinion of others

    I've actually used this passage in some of my writings.   

    In one book, a woman who's just become a vampire  asks, "And just where do I pick up these Divine garments?  At the First Presbyterian Church of Vampires, where Sunday night Worship services are scheduled to begin tomorrow night at 9 P.M.?
   "Well, it's worth a shot."

   I think this quotation may get some more questions.

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Guest Spaulding

That's my Christmas present. The Armor of God by Priscilla Shirer. Hopefully, I can answer this better after I study it for a while.

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Posted (edited)
6 minutes ago, suspensewriter said:

William, why should this lead to more questions?

       Some people might want to know more about the story, which, due to some of its content, would not be allowed on christianwriters.com.   It's posted on a different writers website.   I'm not sure if I should recommended it to any of our members, since some of them are under age.

Edited by William D'Andrea
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The very act of trusting the Lord, having faith, is spiritual warfare.  It helps for me to see each element of the spiritual armor as realities, which if embraced, become tactics for living out our belief in the Gospel.   The tactics en toto help believers to realize the “should not perish but have eternal life” aspiration (strategy) that the Father has for his children.

Edited by Ragamuffin_John
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On 1/1/2022 at 4:17 PM, William D'Andrea said:

      Like much of the Apostle Paul's writing, this passage is very difficult to understand, but it's also very important that we should. 

      xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

     "Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.   Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.  For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.  Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.  Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.  In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.  Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

     "And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. 

     "Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.

     (Ephesians 6: 10-20)

     xxxxxxxxxxxx

     How do any of you interpret this, and how do we apply it to our lives?

      

I'm not sure there is anything to interpret in this passage. I've heard too many interpretations of Bible passages. What bothers me about Bible Studies that I've attended is when someone decides to explain what the Bible is saying. Or, even worse is when someone says, "the Bible says this, but that's not what it really means." I hear that a lot and it continually annoys me.

The author explains this Biblical principle better than anyone that I know of can. The application of the passage in my personal life requires a conscious decision. And if I need help with understanding how to apply this in my life, I consult the Holy Spirit. 

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Guest LauraJo

You can defend any position with a scripture taken out of context. 

 

I love that passage and I interpret it as assurance we can protect and defend our faith by being a spiritual warrior,, I apply it as part of the larger messages of the gospel,

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